To Kill A Mockingbird – Harper Lee

to-kill-a-mockingbird-by-harper-lee-profileThis Pulitzer Prize winning book about racism in the south is still relevant today.  Scout and Jem Finch grow up in Maycomb, Alabama during the Depression.  Their father, Atticus, is a lawyer. Times are hard.  Atticus takes on the defense of Tom Robinson, a black man accused of beating and raping a white woman, Mayella Ewell.  The town is convinced Robinson is guilty.  They despise Atticus for defending him.  Scout and Jem are tormented in school.  It soon becomes clear Robinson couldn’t have committed the crime.  He has a crippled hand, and Atticus proves the Ewell’s are lying.  Scout and Jem realize the depth of the town’s prejudice when Robinson is convicted anyway, and shot trying to escape prison.  After the trial, Mayella’s dad threatens to get back at Atticus for embarrassing him in court.  Atticus ignores the threat, but the children are attacked on Halloween.  A reclusive neighbor, Boo Radley, saves them. Harper Lee never published another book.  She didn’t have to.  This one was enough to immortalize her name.

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